A Trip to the Chocolate Factory : A Hotel Chocolat Masterclass
Yesterday I was invited for a Chocolate making masterclass. This is NOT a drill….A CHOCOLATE MAKING MASTERCLASS at Hotel Chocolat followed by a trip to the tastiest show in town – Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. No I hadn’t been punked, this was actual factual real life and I have to tell you it was bliss.
My friend West End Wilma and I arrived at Hotel Chocolat on Monmouth Street punctually just before 4.30. We were then ushered down into a tasting basement and greeted with smiles and rose prosecco from the tasting team. Yep – life was instantly brilliant.
After sitting down at a suitably beautiful table, laid out with informative chocolate tasting guides and little Easter eggs for us to eat at our own leisure (!) we shortly embarked upon a quick chat from a lovely Hotel Chocolat master chocolatier, Bethany, who told us a little bit about the chocolate making process. In this time we tried some varying strength pieces of chocolate, from 70% coca all the way up to 90% – which apparently isn’t even allowed to officially be called chocolate as it didn’t have any sugar any. But heck, it was great.
We were also encouraged to try some dried coca beans on their own. Some people found them too bitter but I absolutely LOVED them! To me they were like a delicious nut that I would happily snack on at my desk. Good news is that they are healthy too and full of antioxidants! The chocolatiers rewarded my love of the bean by giving me a whole bag of them to take home! Thank you guys!
As our prosecco was topped up, out came the pestle and mortars and the real fun started! Yep, we were told to ground the coca beans as we were about to start making our own chocolate! Hurrah!
The grounding was quite hard work but totally rewarding as we started to see a paste form. We added sugar, oil and some tempered chocolate and pounded until we had a smooth liquid. We then poured our chocolatey concoctions into moulds and they were taken away to cool. Cool!
As our choc was chilling, Bethany gave us a little lesson on tempering chocolate that looked like all kinds of fun. We would have volunteered to have a go but we were quite busy supping our third prosecco and ultimately being happy chocolatey voyeurs!
We were later handed our fully cooled and fully fabulous chocolate bars to take home as well as some super wonderful goody bags that contained tickets to Charlie and the Chocolate factory that night, a CD of the show tunes and some very delicious looking chocolate – hands off it is MIIIINE!
Venturing forth to the Theatre Royal Drury Lane for part two of our chocolate day of fun, we said goodbye to some lovely gals sharing a table with us – Hannah from the Daily Express and Rosanna from Visit London.
Wilma and I totally took the opportunity to chill out in the BEAUTIFUL Saloon Bar of the Theatre Royal Drury Lane and ordered a cheeky pre-show glass of Sauvignon – rude not to really.
As we took our seats to watch the show, we were in a happy chocolate induced state of joy, which only continued as the show progressed – HELLO chocolate river in Act Two…I want to get IN YOU! ALSO Alex Jennings was GREAT as Willy Wonka!
Wilma and I had the most fabulous day out to Hotel Chocolat and the theatre to see the tastiest show in the West End! We can only encourage you to book a masterclass at Hotel Chocolat in collaboration with Charlie and the Chocolate Factory yourselves. As the show says; “It must be believed to be seen”…although we’d say It must be EATEN before seen. And eaten during. And eaten after. Oh gaaad I heart chocolate. And theatre.
Thank you Hotel Chocolat and Mr Willy Wonka for all the fun!